You know you need a website. Everyone’s got a website. Whether you own a business or run a passion project, having your own website and web presence is a must.
But what kind of website do you actually need?
Since there are tons of different types of websites you could build, you need to decide which kind of website design will give you the online presence you’re looking for.
So we’re here to help you out with an (almost) complete list of the most popular types of websites you might think to try. From business websites to personal portfolios, and everything else in between we’re going to guide you through the magical, mysterious world that is website types.
Because we care for you so much, we’ll even pair all types of websites with some notable examples to get you inspired.
Editor’s note 📝 – need an eCommerce site, but want to write a blog? Or think you’d like a portal on your eLearning website? You can combine different types of websites to suit your needs. This will help drive engagement too.
A lead generation website or business websites like Alley, HAUS, and Caravan Restaurant give people an insight into the company’s values and inform potential customers about their products or services.
A business website aims to influence people’s buying decisions and establish the company’s credibility within the industry.
Unlike eCommerce websites that generate direct revenue, business websites instead acts more as an informational site, focused on contributing to the long-term growth of the business than making quick bucks from an online store.
In representing your company online, a business website must reflect your brand. Adding your brand logo along with a matching color palette for web design is a good start.
Over just a few pages, you want visitors to recognize and memorize your brand the moment they enter the website.
Feature-wise, a business website should:
- Be able to answer customers’ inquiries about your business
- Briefly describe the operations and focus of your business
- Include are product descriptions, pricing plans, and testimonials
- Provide contact details or some way for customers to contact your business online directly
- Offer insights into anything your customers might want to know
An eCommerce website is a specific kind of business website that’s kitted out to allow online transactions for customers to buy your products and services online.
Having similar business models to brick-and-mortar stores, this type of website allows people to conduct the entire purchase process online.
With researchers predicting an increase in global eCommerce sales this year, eCommerce remains a promising way to establish successful small businesses.
For best performance, eCommerce websites must have features capable of supporting online transactions so you can sell products easily. This type of website is great for entrepreneurs who want to expand their market or reduce production and operating costs.
Top eCommerce website builder platforms make it easy to promote and integrate your eCommerce website to social media platforms, too.
From selling physical goods and digital products to promoting online services, an eCommerce website can take your business to a whole new level.
eCommerce sites will usually include:
- User-friendly web navigation with helpful filter and search functions
- A fully functional checkout system
- Call-to-action buttons and email marketing integration to your eCommerce store
- Appealing and responsive web design that and encourage visitors to make a purchase on the platform
3. Personal blog
Personal blogs are places for sharing life updates, individual opinions, and news online.
Blogs like WishWishWish, for example, gain a massive following by sharing the owner’s everyday life and fashion tips.
Meanwhile, professionals like Seth Godin write blogs to build a personal brand and online credibility.
Many bloggers even use personal websites to sell promotional products and branded merchandise.
In short, a personal website can be anything and everything you want.
The more quality content you publish on your own blog, the higher your chance of climbing the organic search results will be. You could even use it to generate a stream of income.
A personal website will generally include:
- A header that expresses the content and tone of the blog
- A main content area with access to posts
- A sidebar to navigate between content
- A footer that offers more information about the personal website
4. News websites
News and media websites focus on delivering up-to-date information about the latest world events to the public. They use both textual and visual content.
Sites like The Guardian, BBC, and CNN are successful examples of the corporate website end of this niche.
In the past decade, many traditional news organizations have moved online due to financial and audience pressures.
If you’re thinking about starting a news business, consider making the same decision.
With a news and media website, you get to publish as many articles as you want without being hindered by the high production and distribution costs.
Most sites publishing news stories will:
- Use a multi-column web layout for their landing page that sets news sites apart from other types of websites
- Display each posts’ meta descriptions upfront with relevant visual media as the cover shot to encourage clicks
- Offer a great reading experience besides producing high-quality content,
- Incorporate clean fonts with proportional sizes and an easy-on-the-eyes color palette
5. Online portfolio
Portfolio websites showcase the skills and previous projects of creative professionals who monetize their skills and are on the hunt for employment.
For freelancers and independent contractors, a portfolio website can serve as a visual CV to attract prospective clients and employers.
The best website builder platforms will have plenty of templates for portfolio websites so you can blend your own website with your personality.
A portfolio website will usually will:
- Feature photo gallery if you are a photographer, examples of websites you’ve built if you’re a web designer, or other examples of your work
- Include testimonials from former clients and employers to show your skills and expertise
- Offer links to your social media accounts so future clients and recruiters can get a fuller idea of your personality and get in touch with you easier
6. Educational websites
Educational websites serve as the portal for online courses. These types of websites aim to enhance people’s learning experiences — both inside and outside the classroom.
Udemy and Coursera are two of the market-leading eLearning websites. It helps that their target audience isn’t limited to the relatively small group demographic that is students.
For educators, educational institutions, or professionals who want to share their knowledge with other people, having an education website is an effective and relatively cheap way to do so.
The courses on an educational website can take various forms, like video streaming, podcasts, and interactive games. You may even launch certification programs and monetize them for income.
Educational websites will:
- Publish interesting content presented in compelling ways
- Divide the courses into categories for better accessibility if you focus on more than one subject
- Include a search feature can also help users looking to improve specific skills
- Have easy navigation to help students find the courses they need
- Offer some way to track progress to help drive user engagement
7. Web portal
The key features of a web portal depend on the organization that runs it.
For companies and organizations, a web portal is used for internal purposes, and helpful for distributing work-related information among employees in the most efficient way.
Meanwhile, universities like Harvard and Stanford use web portals to facilitate communication between students and teaching staff and provide easy access to academic information and educational materials.
Regardless of its purpose, web portals will:
- Feature user-friendly design
- Accommodate information distribution as well as internal communication
- Sometimes offer a community forum for users
- Require users to login to the site
True to its name, an entertainment website produces content for entertainment purposes. The subjects may revolve around celebrity news, movies, or funny images — anything that people find entertaining.
E! Online and Netflix are some of the most popular entertainment websites, and provide visitors with endless entertainment and generate profit from it. Magazine websites are another big part of this niche.
If you have plenty of ideas for how to amuse people, consider creating an entertainment website to channel your inner entertainer. The sky is your limit.
Not all entertainment websites work the same way, but most will:
- Feature engaging content meant to entertain users
- Update with fresh content regularly
- Offer a helpful search function to find content
- Offer premium or freemium content
9. Online forum
Forums are used to connect users with similar interests via discussion boards. People from around the world can easily jump into an open discussion and share their thoughts.
If you want to connect users with similar interests, then this type of website is for you. You can take inspiration from popular online forums like BizWarriors, Reddit, and Quora.
In forums, people can have a conversation without being hindered by the technicalities behind it. From website builders to anime, every topic is covered.
Community forum websites generally will:
- Have discussions of different topics separated into sections
- Allow users to post text, images, or videos
- Offer the functionality for other users to comment below posts
- Have some function for upvoting or downvoting content to grab attention
10. Nonprofit websites
The Internet has helped many charities and non-profit organizations to widen their reach.
Similar to businesses, these organizations benefit from having a nonprofit website and a social media presence.
While there are many different types of charities out there, they all need a platform to promote their cause and connect with potential donors.
Since trustworthiness is important for all charities, a website is a good place to build that trust.
A good nonprofit website will:
- Provide in-depth information about the problems at hand
- Offer many ways for individuals and businesses to get involved
- Facilitate signing petitions, joining demonstrations, or donating money
- Have a web design that reflects the overall mission and values of the charity
Wikis are the internet equivalent of encyclopedias and you can create a wiki website for almost any niche out there.
You’re probably familiar with wiki websites like Wikipedia.
The word ‘wiki’ refers to the fact that this kind of website has contributions from many users. This makes it easier for you since you won’t have to be the sole contributor.
A wiki site will:
- Have an overall web design that is usually simple
- Feature good search functionality
- Allow collaborative editing
- Allow the community to join in, since wikis are usually based on niches, like movie franchises or video games
What are the websites in between eCommerce and business websites?
Infopreneur websites, of course. These types of websites focus on selling digital information in the form of tutorials, webinars, eBooks, and videos.
For this type of website to succeed, you need to be willing to put in the work and build a successful and well-known brand.
Many infopreneurs leverage their professional expertise and experience in a particular field.
For example, a digital marketing wizard could create courses on the basics of SEO and email marketing.
An infopreneur site will:
- Use blogging and a strong content marketing strategy to gain traffic to their website
- Offer resources on a specific topic
- Allow users to sign up for subscriptions
- Market themselves as experts
13. Brochure website
While brochure websites might have seen their heyday, these types of websites were popular during the dawn of the internet.
Brochure websites are essentially an online version of a business brochure or a flyer.
A brochure website offers the visitor a good overview of the business, its services, and contact information.
From a web design perspective, these types of websites are simple to set up.
A brochure site will:
- Feature a home page, a contact page, and a product or service page
- Prominently feature call-to-actions across these types of websites.
- Include a phone number and an email address, or a visiting address if you have a physical location
- User compelling content that encourages users to buy into the product or service
Why do you need a website?
If you run a business, you need a website. If you want public exposure, you need a website. If you want to do pretty much anything in the 21st century, first you need a website.
But what exactly does a website offer?
Gain more exposure
A huge 47% of people visit a company website before making a purchase. If you’ve not got a website, these shoppers with buy elsewhere.
Plus, with 4.54 billion people accessing the internet regularly, there’s a good chance that new users discover your website each day — particularly if you manage to climb the search rankings.
Not only does exposure expand your reachability, but it may also increase your brand awareness in the most cost-effective way
Allow easy access
Shockingly, 60% of small businesses operate without a dedicated website, despite being the first port of call for most people interested in a company. Getting a website gives you a 60% advantage over your competitors.
A website allows 24/7 access to your content. People can quickly obtain the information they need from you anytime they want.
Not just that, but they’re also able to do it without having to meet you in person.
All users have the same ability to access the website and its information regardless of their location.
Build your image and credibility
Over 30% of online shoppers will choose a company based on the quality of its website. Whatever type of website you have, it’ll help convince potential customers you’re trustworthy.
Having a website is an effective and affordable way to establish an online presence and authority in your niche industry.
It’s easier to leave a positive impression on others — further benefiting your branding.
Stay on top of trends
It’s predicted that by 2040, 95% of transactions will be via eCommerce. Keeping on top of trends doesn’t just mean fresh marketing, but also following the trends of how people shop and consume.
Generally speaking, managing a website requires you to keep creating content and making sure it’s up-to-date information. To do so, you must stay on top of the industry’s latest innovations and the market’s demands.
This can not only directly benefit the growth of your website, but also keep you on your toes regarding changes that may affect your brand.
How to build a website
No matter what kind of new website you plan to launch, you can design, build and launch it easily with Zyro website builder. It requires no coding or web design experience.
Building your website with Zyro is as simple as:
- Selecting a website template that resonates with your business
- Customizing the template
- Publishing your website and marketing it around the internet
You’ll discover tools to help you find success with all types of websites:
- Launch a blog with Zyro’s extensive professional blogging tools
- Create a successful online store with full eCommerce functionality
- Quickly launch a brochure site with the help of Zyro’s image background remover and resizer
- Promote your business site with powerful marketing and advertising tools
- Attract attention to your news site with easy to use search engine optimization integrations
- Choose from hundreds of designer-made templates for your portfolio